Steve Kilbey & Martin Kennedy
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Steve Kilbey & Martin Kennedy

Brunswick, Victoria, Australia | INDIE

Brunswick, Victoria, Australia | INDIE
Band Alternative EDM


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"Kilbey’s silky evocative voice seductively narrates"

Steve Kilbey & Martin Kennedy Present Unseen Music Unheard Words (Inevitable) These two Australian fellows have only recently first spoken on telephone, but they are already at work on a follow-up to this fine first collaboration. Martin Kennedy of All India Radio and Pray TV created the music and mailed it to Steve Kilbey of The Church who wrote words and sang them over Martin’s melodies. If you were aware of the best work by The Church; this will certainly ring a bell. Kilbey’s silky evocative voice seductively narrates his suitably dreamy lyrics over Kennedy’s cooly opiated atmospheric song structures, recalling nothing so much as The Church at their most stately, subdued and grand. - George Parsons Dream Magazine 10

"Rich, emotive vocals"

It would be hard to review a Steve Kilbey CD without referring to his iconic status as the voice of The Church. That out of the way in line one, it is fair to say Kilbey takes second billing to instrumental collaborator Martin Kennedy (All India Radio). The record was created in unconventional circumstances with Kennedy producing a collection of warm, soporific soundscapes in Melbourne before handing over to Sydneysider Kilbey to overlay rich, emotive vocals and trademark poetic, often absurd, lyrics. - Jonathan Howcroft, Onya Magazine

"Reminiscent of The Church’s Under The Milky Way"

It is an enchanting album in the vein of the best work of The Church. The songs effortlessly blend into one another creating an atmosphere reminiscent of The Church’s Under The Milky Way and titles like Naked As A Star, Stretch Into The Stars and Friends Are Gone give an indication of the ambience of the excellent music on the pair’s debut album together
- Bunbury Mail

"A match made in some intangible corner of unified cosmic consciousness"

As a lyricist, Steve Kilbey has a gift for enhancing musical moods with intriguing narratives that meander between myth, dream and nonsense. This blind collaboration with Melbourne soundscape artist Martin Kennedy (All India Radio) happened by mail over the course of a year: a match made in some intangible corner of unified cosmic consciousness. Kilbey’s melodies whisper and croak of epic farewells, biblical battles, shades of starlight and lovers from other worlds. Kennedy meets him more than halfway on a magic carpet of soporific washes and rhythms, echoing strings and sighing choral beds. - Michael Dwyer, The Age newspaper

"4.5 Stars Occasionally side projects can be something really spectacular"

4.5 STARS. Occasionally side projects can be something really spectacular. Steve Kilbey (The Church) and Martin Kennedy (All India Radio) have been working individually in separate cities on a series of songs that bury you in lavish dreamscapes. There's a sense of nostalgia, like flipping through an old photo album or late night dreams full of fleeting images. Kennedy's landscapes are soft, warm and grainy as Kilbey's lyrics conjure visions of times gone by; he whispers phrases as though telling us intimate secrets whilst trumpet players blow slinky lines under beds of electronica, strings and tapping Morse code messages. At times it's like sitting in at a spooky jazz club at 4am where "angels play Dixie on their horns". This isn't an album where you pick favourite songs - you simply immerse yourself in the whole lush experience. The good news is they're recording a follow up.
- Reverb Mag

"4 STARS Ever since Air’s Moon Safari came out in 1998"

4 STARS Ever since Air’s Moon Safari came out in 1998, the term ‘chillout’ seemed to be forever hijacked by Ibiza compilations. Fortunately Martin Kennedy, the man in charge of All India Radio’s downtempo instrumentals since 1999, knows that while cheese and fine wine complement each other, their respective musical equivalents don’t. So does The Church supremo Steve Kilbey (who would have a couple of trademark snipes ready if anyone described his latest effort as ‘easy listening’); firm adherents to the quality aesthetic, the two share a similar approach to music-making. Nearly four years in the works, Unseen Music Unheard Words is a calm, slow-paced record tailor-made for Sunday mornings, its twelve tracks sung by Kilbey in his inimitable half-hushed manner (with periodic high harmonies from brother John). Stately opener Eyes Ahead is followed by the similarly unhurried, yet more melancholic My Will Be Yours, its lazily-picked minor pattern chiming over warm synth whirr. Built over a textbook acoustic guitar progression, Maybe Soon nevertheless possesses a solid dose of charm and would be perfectly at home on The Church’s latest opus Untitled 23, as would Thought Of Leaving, Kilbey revisiting his own You Took’s opening bass harmonics to gorgeous effect. The sombre double of Naked As A Star and Friends Are Gone comes as a deft finishing brush, and while Steve might wince at the dreaded ‘C-word’, I doubt anyone else is going to disagree about UMUW’s essence: excellent chillout music.

- Rave Magazine

"This is the brilliance of the perfectly titled Unseen Music, Unheard Words"

The distinctive voice of Steve Kilbey comes in, and I am immediately transported to one of the best concerts I saw this year. The Church managed to release one of the best records of their career with Untitled #23, not to mention the fact that their 2009 tour of the US was one of their most successful ever.
Ever since Kilbey's first solo record, The Slow Crack, I have always known that he keeps the personal stuff for himself. In all honesty, though, I think just about everything he has done as a solo artist would have fit within the context of The Church. Unseen Music, Unheard Words certainly backs up this impression. There is not a song on here that would have sounded out of place on Untitled #23.
Apparently, the disc was recorded in an interesting manner. Martin Kennedy of All India Radio and Pray TV created the music, then mailed the tracks to Steve Kilbey, who then wrote lyrics to fit. Kind of an Elton John/Bernie Taupin situation in reverse. What the two of them managed to come up with, though, is quite extraordinary. Leading off with “Eyes Ahead,” Kilbey sets a tone of solitude, longing and loss that pervades the album throughout.
Depressing? Yes.
Beautiful? That too.
Like Mark Lanegan’s first solo LP, Whisky For The Holy Ghost, or Chris Bell’s I Am The Cosmos, Kilbey reaches into his own heart of darkness. The results are as deeply moving as anything I have ever heard.
The pain of “Stretch Into The Stars” is so real, it is difficult to describe. Kilbey presents a break-up on Valentine's Day that obviously destroyed him. The song is followed by the more upbeat “Maybe Soon,” which balances the previous hurt with a dose of new possibilities.This is the brilliance of the perfectly titled Unseen Music, Unheard Words.
I cannot deny the contribution of Martin Kennedy’s music, because all of it fits so incredibly well. But this is a record that delves deep into the soul of a true poet, Steve Kilbey.
He is an amazing talent. Right up there with Van Morrison and Nick Drake, as far as I am concerned. Like Neil Young's On The Beach, this is a record that speaks to people who may not be so impressed with the latest Pop thrills.

Read more: - Blogcritics


White Magic (due January 2011)
Unseen Music Unheard Words (2009)



Steve Kilbey, front man of legendary atmospheric rockers The Church and writer of the worldwide hit Under The Milky Way (featured on the Donnie Darko soundtrack and covered by The Killers and SIA) joins forces with Martin Kennedy of acclaimed indie instrumentalists All India Radio to create an album made in heaven. Unseen Music Unheard Words combines All India Radio’s gentle melodic pop with Kilbey’s silken voice and lyrical know-how. It is a deep album, full of unexpected twists and turn on every listen.

About the Church
“The Church are one the best pop acts of all time” – The Vine

The Church are, at heart and their best, psychedelic electricians, and their full-volume shows in recent years have been ringing endorsements for their stubborn longevity. - David Fricke, Rolling Stone

Steve Kilbey's distant, breathy vocals and harmonies mesh with the mellifluous guitars and sparse keyboard sprinklings….ethereal sounds of early Pink Floyd ("Destination"), the boldness of Echo ("North, South, East And West"), and the pop savvy of Lloyd Cole ("Reptile") together make Starfish a cohesive and compelling work. If you're looking for pop salvation, look no further than The Church. - CMJ

About All India Radio
One of the most elegant and simple instrumental rock albums I've ever heard..a heavenly cloud of radiance that is simply not of the material world. -

The 2003 Australian Album of the Year may well have been recorded by an act virtually nobody has heard of. Melbourne-based All India Radio's self-titled third album is a breathtaking triumph; one of the most exquisite, ethereal, instrumental records ever made in Australia. - The Brag Magazine